2 Esdras

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an Apocryphal book of angelic revelations


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Alastair Hamilton offers some clues about this in his treatment of the reception history of 2 Esdras among the Anabaptists.
23) As a result the Dutch Mennonites presumably no longer were drawn to the distinctive ethical message of the Apocrypha or to the apocalyptic thought reflected in 2 Esdras.
Cited in full are 2 Esdras 16:70-78; Judith 8:21-27; and Wisdom of Solomon 3:1-6.
The Frisian "Thirty-Three Articles of 1617," otherwise known as "Confession of Faith According to God's Word," (60) cites, as scriptural warrant, Tobit, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach, Baruch, 2 Esdras, 2 Maccabees, and 3 Maccabees, along with the sixty-six books of what became the standard Protestant canon.
Dyck notes that "from the Apocrypha, the Wisdom of Solomon, Tobit, Sirach, the Maccabees and Esdras were favorites [among the martyrs who quoted Scripture], especially 2 Esdras with its reference to the fate of the ungodly.
Among those that are not worth reading and should be banned are 1 and 2 Esdras, Baruch, the Prayer of Manasseh, and the Additions to Daniel.
See also Alastair Hamilton, "The Apocryphal Apocalypse: 2 Esdras and the Anabaptist Movement," Nederlands Archief voor Kerkgeschiedenis 68 (1988), 1-16, esp.
This constitutes the central portion (chapters 3-14) of the book of 2 Esdras in the Apocrypha of the Bible (Esdras is the Greek equivalent of Ezra).
2 Esdras even has a parallel for the command made by the divine that the favored mortal must eat flowers as a prerequisite for divine revelation.
In 2 Esdras, the eating of flowers is part of the regimen of fasting and abstinence from rich food and drink; it is a sign that the initiate is prepared to deny luxury and prepare himself for an encounter with the divine.
In 2 Esdras 14, 22 the suppliant likewise prays for the skill which will enable him to convey his encounter with the divine experience.
Scripture itself becomes the answer for all the narrator's doubts; 2 Esdras 12,35: 'This is the dream you saw, and this is its interpretation.
Moreover, it is not immediately obvious to the reader even today whether 2 Esdras is predominately Jewish or Christian, since the first two chapters, 1-2, and the last two, 15-16, are thought to be Christian additions to an originally Jewish text, but they fit together easily since both Christian and Jewish portions speak with similar terminology about a coming 'Messiah.
Most of the students understood the biblical text in the same way that their Muslim friends understood the Qur'an: the Bible was the result of a divine dictation of the inerrant word of God (see 2 Esdras [4 Ezra] 14:38-44).